Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Day Eight-Hundred-Seven: The Internal Struggles of Libby the Lumberjack/Carpenter/Mechanic/Captain

Libby had constructed an enormous, deployable covering for the Sky Bitch, knowing full well that the ship would get buffeted by snow eventually. She’d feared that it would fall while the ship was in flight, and had hoped to be on the ground when it did. But the Sky Bitch was not on the ground, and when the wave of crystallized water fell from above, neither was Libby. Consequently, the deployable covering remained safely inside its housing.

The snow flooded into the holes in the Sky Bitch’s glass canopy, oozing into the ship in vast amounts and tugging the hull violently downward. Libby sprawled backward, propelled into the snow by gravity, and she screamed obscenities as the airship tilted towards the ground. She’d spent enough time in flight to know that they were hurtling towards the earth.

Yet that fact seemed to pale in comparison to what she’d seen. Indeed, despite the fear of death, the fright of watching her husband turn into a tar-filled monster cut so much deeper.

The Sky Bitch shuddered and wobbled, its propellors clogged with thick reams of snow, its balloon abruptly weighted down by several hundred pounds of beautiful white, and it veered off and away from the confused Non army waiting far below. Libby could feel the ship attempting to right itself, the helium in its balloon straining to rise, but the weight of the accumulated snow proved too great, and the Sky Bitch began to spin. 

Buried in the snow, struggling to dig herself free, Libby felt her stomach churn. She wanted to vomit. She also dared not, because there was too much snow in her face, and she needed to breathe, oh, she needed to 

I married a thing.

feel the warmth of the overhead lamps again, to grab the wheel of the Sky Bitch and set it to rights, because, by the gods, she was the captain of the fucking ship, and so she dug, and so more snow fell in around her, and so, slowly, she was, rather than freed, buried.

It was never my fault, Libby thought, her arms too sore from exertion and the pinch of Kierkegaard’s horrifying grip to move any further. It was him. He made the freaks. He’s the reason Eve… and Fynn… and… oh, gods, the other one - 

“I will save you,” a tiny voice whispered in Libby’s ear. “Don’t worry. I’m here. You’ll be fine.”

Crushed in place, the world a whirling dervish, Libby took no comfort in the hissing of the rat, which had somehow managed to clutch to her shoulder. Its tone was cold but delighted, the sizzle of frostbite laying thick on the skin. Libby shuddered.

Maybe I don’t want to be saved, she thought. Visions of herself, holding a knife to her oversized belly, floated to mind. If I’m saved I’m gonna have to look for answers to questions. I’m gonna have to figure out why my husband is not really my husband, because I’m not married to a thing. I’m not.

“Of course you’re not,” the rat cooed, its tiny voice muffled by the snow packing in around Libby’s head. “You’re too good for that. Just wait, I have something waiting - “

The rat said no more. Packed tightly in snow though she was, Libby had nevertheless kept her eyes open. She was somehow unable to close them, despite the danger of crushing white on her face. So when a ray of light abruptly broke through the darkness, a light that gave Libby a glimpse of the command deck and forced her eyeballs to realize that they were caught in the sickening spin that the pit of her stomach had already grasped, the first thing she noticed was the hand.

The clawed hand. The black hand. The hand of her husband, reaching desperately out to grab for her.

The hand of a monster.

“Don’t take it,” the rat whispered. “You don’t need him. He’s a thing. I can give you so much better.”

Green eyes leered at Libby, half shrouded by oily locks of spiky, unruly hair. And in those eyes, Libby saw -

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